- Renée Zellweger, Bridget Jones's Diary, 2000. Naomi and Lucy Lawless were the two down-under queens ridiculously considered for the dumpy/lumpy 30-something London office worker. Even if they dared to put on 20 pounds like Zellweger did.
- Rachel Weisz, Runaway Jury, 2002. Impossible to play Marlee due to committed to a better movie.
- Rachel Weisz, The Constant Gardener, 2004. Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles considered Nicole Kidman too old (at 36) and so called in her pal Naomi (35) for the John Le Carré film. Weisz was 36 - and loved by Oscar!
- Jessica Alba, The Fantastic Four, 2004. Once bitten - by the King Kong re-remake - twice shy of the fantastique. Namely, The Invisible Girl, aka Susan Storm.
- Radha Mitchell, Melinda and Melinda, 2004. Woody Allen craved Winona Ryder but no agency would insure her after her infamous shoplifting arrest.Naomi was too busy. Instead of looking further, longer, Woody allowed the film to fail by choosingthe Aussie he enjoyed inTen Tiny Love Stories, 2000, who was unable to carry a movie. Or indeed two, considering her dual role.
- Carla Gugino, Sin City, 2004. Directors Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller also looked at Ashley Judd, Carrie-Anne Moss, Sarah-Jessica Parker and Uma Thurman for Lucille in their “live” comic-strip.
- Nicole Kidman, The Interpreter, 2005. Declined director Sydney Pollack's offer of the lead knowing how much that her good friend Nicole Kidman wanted it...and went on to be the “grimera” in Ring, 21 Grams and the US re-tread of Funny Games. “Why do I keep making these grim movies? Well, female roles in comedies aren’t that good... and it’s getting rid of demons.”
- Eva Green, Casino Royale, 2006.
- Hayley Atwell, Cassandra’s Dream, 2006. Woody calls again... and her schedule interferred again. Naomi made sure she was free next time - You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, 2009.
- Nicole Kidman,Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus, 2006. Suddenly, after 20 years on studio shelves, the New York 60s photographer was being seen as Australian: Toni Collette, Naomi and, obviously, the Aussie with an Oscar... up for everything in 2004.
- Hilary Swank, Conviction, 2010. Change of Betty Anne Waters, the high school drop-out who spent close on 20 years putting herself through law school to reverse her brother’s murder conviction. “Not every scene happened,” commented the real Waters, “but every emotion happened.” Bro’ was no no angel. No killer, either, Following his death in a fall, she continues fighting for the unjustly convicted.
- Susan Sarandon,Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, 2009. Another down-under legend, Cate Blanchett, also passed on being Sylvia Moore.
- Cate Blanchett, Robin Hood, 2009. When Sienna Miller quit as the maid, er widow Marion (sic), Naomi (and her pal Nicole Kidman) were among several Sherwood candidates: Marion Cotillard, Charlize Theron,Annabelle Wallis, Kate Winslet.
- Hilary Swank, Conviction, 2009. Watts was first due as Betty Anne Warren, the working Mom who put herself through law school to fight her brother’s murder convicytion.Perfect for double Oscar-winner Hilary!
- Hilary Swank, Conviction, 2010. Change of Betty Anne Waters, the high school drop-out who spent close on 20 years putting herself through law school to reverse her brother’s murder conviction. “Not every scene happened,” commented the real Waters, “but every emotion happened.”
- Jennifer Aniston, Horrible Bosses, 2010. Watts and Sarah Jessica Parker were In the mix for Charlie Day’s erotomaniac dentist boss - “You're gonna give me that dong, Dale” - in a masculine take on Nine To Five.
- Marion Cotillard, The Dark Knight Rises, 2011.
- Sandra Bullock, Gravity, 2012. Natalie Portman was #1 choice after Angelina Jolie wanted $20m to be Ryan, lone survivor of a space mission to repair the Hubble telescope - trying to to return to Earth and her daughter. But Natalie was pregnant. Enter: Naomi, Marion Cotillard (pregnant!), Rebecca Hall, Scarlett Johansson, Blake Lively, Sienna Miller, Carey Mulligan, Rachel Weisz, Olivia Wilde.
- Nicole Kidman, Queen of the Desert, 2013. Watts had to quit when shooting was delayed and so - inevitably - Nicole took over as as Gertrude Bell, the 1868-1926 writer, archaeologist, cartographer, explorer, political officer, spy. In short: the female Lawrence of Arabia.